Unfortunately, your access has now expired. But there’s good news—by subscribing today, you will receive 22 issues of Booklist magazine, 4 issues of Book Links, and single-login access to Booklist Online and over 170,000 reviews.
Your access to Booklist Online has expired. If you still subscribe to the print magazine, please proceed to your profile page and check your subscriber number against a current magazine mailing label. (If your print subscription has lapsed, you will need to renew.)
You must be logged in to read full text of reviews.
> Logged-in users can make lists, save searches, e-mail, and more!
> Click My Profile to create a username & password
> Try a free trial or subscribe today
July 2016 BOOKLIST
Find more Top 10 First Novels
Anthill. By Edward O. Wilson. 2010. Norton, $24.95 (9780393071191).
Wilson, world-famous biologist and Pulitzer Prize–winning author of such seminal nonfiction books as Consilience (1998) and The Creation (2006), writes a first novel about an Alabama boy and his love for an old-growth forest.
Barnacle Love. By Anthony De Sa. 2010. Algonquin, paper, $13.95 (9781565129269).
Young Manuel leaves his home on the Azores Islands to seek a better life, eventually settling in Toronto with his wife and family, only to watch his son leave to follow his version of the dream.
Bloodroot. By Amy Greene. 2010. Knopf, $24.95 (9780307269867).
Greene follows one impoverished family from the Depression to the present in an affecting saga set in an Appalachian region called Bloodroot Mountain, named for a flower that can both poison and heal.
Born under a Million Shadows. By Andrea Busfield. 2010. Holt, paper, $14 (9780805090611).
Busfield, a British journalist who lived in Afghanistan, describes post-Taliban Kabul from the viewpoint of precocious 11-year-old Fawad, in a poetic, bawdy, and wise novel about love, religion, and life.
Crossing. By Andrew Xia Fukuda. 2010. AmazonEncore, paper, $12.95 (9781935597032).
In this creepy yet elegant literary thriller, Kris Xu’s fantasies about transcending his school identity as the quiet Chinese kid are dashed by bullying and racism until he auditions for a school musical, and other students start showing up dead.
The Girl Who Fell from the Sky. By Heidi W. Durrow. 2010. Algonquin, $22.95 (9781565126800).
In Durrow’s measured and sorrowful debut, young Rachel, the daughter of an African American father and a Danish mother, survives a horrific family tragedy, but she must learn to navigate the toxic complexities of racism and forge a sustaining sense of self.
Ilustrado. By Miguel Syjuco. 2010. Farrar, $26 (9780374174781).
Syjuco illuminates his native Philippines in this dazzlingly imaginative and insightful literary collage portraying two Filipino authors living in New York, one, a literary lion who dies under mysterious circumstances; the other, his student, who is determined to solve the mystery.
Kapitoil. By Teddy Wayne. 2010. HarperPerennial, paper, $13.99 (9780061873218).
Brilliant programmer Karim is transferred from Qatar to Manhattan, where he develops a program that predicts oil futures, launching a funny and incisive novel of one young man’s heady introduction to American culture.
Rich Boy. By Sharon Pomerantz. 2010. Twelve, $24.99 (9780446563185).
Pomerantz charts one man’s complicated journey from a working-class Jewish neighborhood in 1950s suburban Philadelphia to 1980s high-society New York, and through many definitions of self and success.
Ruby’s Spoon. By Anna Lawrence Pietroni. 2010. Spiegel & Grau, $26 (9781400068685).
In Pietroni’s suspenseful fairy tale–like novel, a provocative stranger comes to an English town dependent on a button factory in the wake of the Great War, and changes everything for motherless 13-year-old Ruby.
> Try a free trial or subscribe today